Tag Archives: narcissistic

Never, Ever, Ever Do This With A Narcissistic Boss!


Narcissism (Photo credit: videocrab)

Never, Ever, Ever Do This With A Narcissistic Boss!

by Dr. Neil Lavender

Narcissists give off a lot of energy. They are exciting to be around. They seem to know what’s going on with everyone, they are very plugged in and people want to share information with them. Even if they aren’t headed towards the top, they appear that way.

One of the problems with narcissists, however, is that they do not respect boundaries. They will use private information against you in the workplace, for example. Things that you say in jest or in confidence; or, more correctly, things that you believe were set in jest or in confidence, will often come back to haunt you.

Because of their vibrancy and energy, you will be tempted to go outside your normal relationship with your narcissistic boss and want to connect with him/her on a more personal basis. You might, for example, want to be their friend or associate with them on a social basis. Perhaps he will invite you out for dinner with your spouse. Or maybe invite you to a membership with her social club. Perhaps even take a vacation with them.

Bear in mind that the narcissist is exploitative. That is one of their main characteristics. They are just using you to get something from you; be it your adoration, unique knowledge, things that you own which they want (including spouses!) or inside information that they can use in the workplace.

We can say from experience that these things will come back to haunt you. So here is some very good advice:

Always stay in your lane when you are working for narcissistic boss. The immediate gains that you get will be at best be temporary and the long-term effects can be devastating. Just relate to them on a professional basis. Don’t let their false promises and invitations lure you in. Do your job well and stay in your lane. Maintain proper boundaries and you will survive the narcissistic boss.



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Using Interventions For Narcissistic Personality Disorders.

Using Interventions For Narcissistic Personality Disorders.

Here is help for those involved with a narcissist

by Neil J Lavender, PhD

It is a real challenge to make changes in a one-way relationship with a self-centered narcissist. It’s all about them and never about you. Sometimes the best efforts fail. Getting an individual with Narcissistic Personality Disorder into psychotherapy is in itself a small miracle. Moreover, even the best psychotherapists can be challenged when dealing with the narcissist.
But there is one more option that is slowly emerging onto the psychotherapy scene. One of the newer cutting-edge technologies being advocated by experts for helping individuals with Narcissistic Personality Disorder is “the intervention”. Doing an intervention with your narcissistic other can be a difficult yet valuable strategy in dealing with highly resistant narcissistic people. Interventions can take a good deal of time, preparation, and resources, and note that with intervention, you risk terminating the relationship.

An intervention is a technique that was originally developed to break through the denial and resistance in a substance abuser who refuses to acknowledge her problem. Several key people in the substance abuser’s life—family members, friends, and the like—confront her with her problem, the pain she has caused them, and their concern for her well-being. They are usually aided by a professional trained in interventions. In some instances, a bed in a rehab center has previously been reserved, so the patient’s bags are already packed.

More recently, interventions have been used to break through the denial of people with eating disorders. The fact that it is a technique specifically designed to prevail over denial makes it a good choice for narcissists because denial is one of their key symptoms.
Here are the steps in implementing an intervention.
1. Enlist the aid of a professional. Interventions can be very stormy and emotional experiences. While it is possible to have an intervention without a professional, your chances are better with the help of an experienced practitioner.

2. Recruit your participants. These should be people who have some influence over the narcissist or people whom the narcissist has hurt in some way. Stick to about four or five people if you can.

3. Plan your intervention. The key participants should meet at least one time to plan the meeting without the narcissist’s knowledge. In this meeting, you need to set goals, like getting the narcissist to commit to psychotherapy. Develop talking points; everyone should have only one or two key things to say. Try to stick to those points without hitting the narcissist with everything under the sun. Remember to communicate compassion throughout the session and resist the temptation to withhold it for revenge. Plan strategies for what to do if and when the narcissist resists. Be prepared to apply a consequence if the narcissist insists on carrying on the same old, same old. Ending the relationship, litigating, or not participating in certain activities with the narcissist are some possibilities. Leverage is your ace in the hole.

4. During the intervention, stay calm, for things can get rough. Remember, this is a loving gesture done out of concern. Make it clear that ignoring the problem would have only hurt the narcissist. You may be surprised that this show of support actually touches the narcissist. Avoid labels and general sweeping statements. Use I-messages. Stay upbeat and helpful.

Experts on intervention with substance abuse vary in their reports on intervention effectiveness from 50 to 90 percent (with professional help). Statistics on intervention done with narcissists are not yet available.

The Institute for Advanced Studies in Personality and Psychopathology in Port Jervis, NY is a good starting place to set up a personal intervention
Web: http:/

Taken from Lavender, N. and Cavaiola, A. (2011) The One-Way Relationship Workbook: Step-by-Step Help for Coping With Narcissists, Egotistical Lovers, Toxic Coworkers, and Others Who Are Incredibly Self- absorbed. (New Harbinger Self-Help Workbook)


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Narcissistic Personality Disorder – A Great Introduction to the Narcissist

Narcissistic Personality Disorder – Psych Central.


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Narcissists on Facebook. Never!


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The Best Description of a Female Narcsisst Ever!

Although males outnumber females in the Narcissism department, the female of the species is often “more deadly than the male.”

This link will tell you all about it. Super job by June Walsh.Check her out!


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Here are 4 different types of Narcissists.

Reprinted from The One-Way Relationship Workbook: Step-by-Step Help for Coping With Narcissists, Egotistical Lovers, Toxic Coworkers, and Others Who Are Incredibly Self-Absorbed


By Neil Lavender, Ph.D. and Alan Cavaiola, Ph.D.

Not all narcissists are the same. Millon and Davis (1996) describe the following subtypes of people with NPD: the unprincipled narcissist, the amorous narcissist, the compensatory narcissist, and the elitist narcissist. As you read about these subtypes, see if any seem similar to the person you have concerns about. Note that both men and women can fall into any of these categories, and the narcissist in your life may exhibit traits of more than one subtype.

The Unprincipled Narcissist

What characterizes this group of narcissists is that they seem to be devoid of a conscience, or sense of right and wrong. They are often unconcerned with the welfare of others and are amoral, unscrupulous, and deceptive in their dealings with others. They exude an arrogant sense of self-worth and grandiosity. They are driven by a need to outwit others, which proves that they are smarter than those they prey on. It’s not unusual to find this type of narcissist in jails, prisons, and drug rehabilitation centers although many unprincipled narcissists go through life without running afoul of the law.

The Amorous Narcissist

Amorous narcissists have an erotic or seductive orientation. They construct and measure their self-worth around sexual conquests. They often run through a string of pathological relationships, casting aside the person they have just seduced only to look for their next conquest. Amorous narcissists are often known for being heartbreakers, as well as committing some rather outrageous acts, such as conning their sexual partners out of huge sums of money, pathological lying, and other types of fraudulent behavior. The amorous narcissist is truly the Don Juan character who compensates for deeper feelings of inadequacy by seducing others and taking them for all they’re worth. Each sexual conquest reinforces the amorous narcissist’s sense of self-worth and over-inflated self-image.

The Compensatory Narcissist

This type of narcissist is driven by a need to compensate for past hurts or childhood emotional wounds by creating an illusion of superiority. Compensatory narcissists live in a fantasy world of their own creation in which they “pursue the leading role in a false and imaginary theater” (Millon and Davis 1996, 411) rather than living their own lives. They are driven to enhance their self-esteem through what are often imagined achievements. In order to achieve this goal for prestige, compensatory narcissists need an audience of others who will buy into their deception. In fact, compensatory narcissists are often hypervigilant or highly sensitive to how others react or perceive them, often watching or carefully listening for any signs of criticism or disdain.

The Elitist Narcissist

In some ways similar to the compensatory narcissist, elitist narcissists are often obsessed with their own inflated self-image. They often create a false sense of self that bears little resemblance to their actual selves, yet they manage to convince themselves (and often those around them) of their unique talents and abilities. They feel empowered and entitled to special treatment because of whatever status or pseudo-achievements they may have attained. Elitist narcissists often turn relationships into competitions or contests, whether they are work relationships, friendships, or even love relationships. Here the goal is winning, no matter what the means or cost, in order to prove to others (and themselves) their incomparable superiority. Elitist narcissists are often social climbers and they think nothing of stepping on or over anyone in their quest for fame and status. They are very adept at marketing themselves and will not shrink from any opportunity to do so. Because elitist narcissists hold themselves in such high regard, they see little need to listen to others or follow directions.


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Personality Disorders 101 (Cont’d)

Personality Disorders 101 (Cont’d)

As I mentioned in my last blog, the individual with a PD has a key component missing from their personality; usually as a result of a flawed childhood of some sort. Here are some other characteristics:

1)      They appear normal. You may never identify the person as being “mentally ill”.  In some cases they can be loyal friends or charismatic leaders. Their PD might even help them succeed in life. They might be highly perfectionistic for example making themselves attractive workaholics to their employers.

Think Scott Peterson the guy who most likely killed his wife and unborn child. If he lived next door to you, you probably would have wanted to hang out with him!

2)      They usually don’t know they have a problem. People with PD’s tend to see their flaws as strengths. A person with Dependent PD, for example, might misperceive their clinginess as just being loyal and attentive. This lack of insight makes it difficult for them to see their own problems which they blame on others.

Perfectionists (Individuals with Obsessive-Compulsive PD’s) claim they are just trying to do the right things and that others are just slacking off.  People need to be more like them. You can see why dealing with these folks can be so difficult.

3)      They don’t do well in therapy. Indeed, due to #3, they usually don’t seek therapy unless they are prodded by others. New therapies are emerging for them which I will discuss in future blogs. Some people believe they are incurable.

The rumor(?) is that if a budding psychologist is taking the oral part of their licensing exam and tell the licensing board that they successfully treated a PD as part of their internship, they are sent home, without a license!

4)      They have a way of making you feel, behave and think differently than you would around other people. Many people, for example, when dealing with a person with Dependent PD tend to patronize or want to nurture them, even though they are not like that with others. The end result of this is you feel bad, they don’t.

Want to learn more? I’ll continue Personality Disorders 101 next time. I feel an excellent primer on the topic is our book Toxic Coworkers. Originally titled “Personality Disorders in the Workplace” it offers a highly readable introduction to all of the personality disorders offering advice that is highly useful in work and other relationships.


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